‘Off The Wall’

To gather further knowledge on plain t-shirts featuring black and white photographic prints, I looked into the infamous skate brand Vans. These t-shirts I have shown are from their latest collection online. I wanted to look into a well-known brand to both gather more ideas for my own photos but also ensure none of the major clothing brands famous for printed t-shirts, are doing anything similar to my own ideas.

Legends Stecyk Tee – This is one of my favourite t-shirts I have looked at featuring a person rather than just abstract photography which is what I will focus on. I like the contrast between the dark floor and the light sky, with the dark helmet, hair and jeans of the skateboarder. Lots of contrast with objects within the image is something I could look into for my photos.

OTW Gallery Jai Tanju Camera Tee – I really like the simplicity of this image due to the layout of the content, but also the square photo with the content central within the image. I also like the placement of the image on the t-shirt. I think this heavy focus on a simple photo with a simple and obvious image placement on the t-shirt is an idea I could consider for my project.

Wheelin’ Tee – This is my least favourite t-shirt out of the three as I feel I have seen similar designs on a few other brands/designers. I feel it is one of these images that is created to be liked by the masses and popular amongst a large audience. I want to create photos that are different and not necessarily liked by everyone who sees them. I want my photos to provoke different feelings and reactions, both of approval and disapproval.

After researching another brand which sells black and white photographic tees, I have been able to gather further knowledge on what I do and don’t want my images to appear like, but also I have been able to discover what reactions I want to achieve with the viewers.


HUF 10th Anniversary Collection Review


I wanted to further research into the skateboarding brand HUF as I discovered they did a photographic collection featuring several black and white photos on plain t-shirts. I have included all the black and white photo tees from the 10th anniversary collection to help inspire my own images. Whilst most of the images feature people rather than objects, there are techniques within the photos that I can possibly use for my own images.

Atiba Jefferson – This image is successful in showcasing this particular skateboarder, however I do not find it overly eye-catching. I think this is because I have seen images similar to this before. However, I do like the layout of the photo with the top half containing the skateboarder, and the bottom a plain wall and skate ramp. This concept of concentrating on halves within a photo is something I could use for my photos.

Skin Phillips – I like that this t-shirt features a slightly more abstract image than some of the others, as this is more relevant to my own project and the type of images I wish to use for my t-shirts. I also like the physical composition within the image, with the skateboarder, Mark Gonzales, looking through the fixture a little off centre, makes the photo more unusual to the dead centre layout of many photos on printed t-shirts. However I don’t think the blackness of the rectangular fixture combine with the lightness of the surroundings works that well. Composition and attention to light and dark within my photos is something I can draw from analysing this particular t-shirt.

Dennis McGrath – I do like this image in photography terms, and I think it works well printed onto a t-shirt, however there is not much I can draw from this particular t-shirt to relate to my project. Specifically about this image I like the lightness of the skateboarder within the photo, all apart from the feet and the skateboard.

Bryce Kanights – This is one of my favourite t-shirts out of the selection included, this is due to obvious usage of the rule of thirds. The pale sky combined with the darker and geometric railings in the middle and then again with a pale floor and bottom third. This concentration in the middle using tone and a busier middle section creates focus to the skateboarder (Keith Hugnagel) and the impressive trick he is performing (a very high ollie onto railing) is a very clever method in making an eye-catching and memorable image.

Mike O’Meally – Again I really like the subject content of the image displayed on this t-shirt, mainly because of what is actually happening within the photo. Nevertheless, the photo isn’t that relevant into what direction I want my t-shirt designs to go in.

Lance Dawes – Again I like the subject content of the photo on this t-shirt but also the angle in which it has been taken. The angle of the windowed wall adds a hint of the image being abstract. This attention to an obvious angle focus being a main feature within an image is a technique I could consider for my own photos, as the outcome is quite striking and noticeable.

Joe Brooks – As this is the most abstract image within the collection (out of the black and white images within the collection), it is most relevant to my project. I really like the composition and subject content of the photo due to the prominent use of rule of thirds, but also the fact that you can’t necessarily tell what is featured in the image straight away. Regarding the rule of thirds in this image I specifically like that light and dark has been used to create this use of the rule. This extreme contrast of light and dark is a technique I could focus on for my own photos.

After analysing all the black and white photographic t-shirts within this collection, I have been able to gather further information and ideas to inspire creative and memorable black and white abstract photos.


Progressing with my t-shirt project, I chose to research several sort-of-well-known clothing brands which heavily focus on t-shirts being their main product to be sold. I looked into the brands which sold t-shirts featuring high-quality black and white images, and then used four of my favourite t-shirts but also most relevant to my own project.

Chocolate – Whilst I do not necessarily plan to use photos of scenery within my own project, I like the smaller size of the image but also the placement. However, I do not like the use of their brand name within the actual photo as I feel this detracts focus on the photo itself. Considering placement and size of image on the t-shirt is something I will think about for my t-shirts.

HUF – From a skate brand point of view HUF is one of my preferred brands. This is because they produce t-shirts like this with high-quality photos which have substance. I love the layout of the photo and content, however I do not want to include sport or people within my own images. This is due to the fact I want to focus on a more abstract and distorted image collection. I do like the use of a larger image on the t-shirt, but I do not really like the portrait layout.

Etudes – This design is particularly relevant to my project as the image is black and white, simple and uses everyday objects to create an effective photo. Whilst I like the simplicity and use of an everyday object, I want my own images to be much more abstract and almost impossible to tell what the original object in the photo is. I will consider simplicity within an image for my own project.

The Quiet Life – This t-shirt features the most abstract image, which is relevant to my project, but again I do not want to use people within my own images. As an abstract more unusual photo on a t-shirt, it works well with its pure simplicity and the layout. A small, abstract image is something I will consider for my own t-shirts.

After researching the few brands that do t-shirts with high-quality black and white images I have gathered some information on what I do and do not want to feature within my t-shirts. I will go on to research certain brands and websites that will be suitable for my project development.